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How to Become a Banker

Career News December 30, 2013

Banks play a significant role in the thriving or declining of our economy. Imagine how difficult it would be for home buyers to secure a new home, if not for the banks. Cars wouldn’t sell off the lots and many aspiring students wouldn’t be able to attend the college of their choice if banks did not exist. But how could banks operate without the bankers? How do you become a banker?

Banker is a very broad term, sweeping an array of different career opportunities. A teller could be considered a banker, being that this person assists with opening bank accounts, setting up certificates of deposits and aiding with other money-handling options. A broker could be considered a banker as well, being that brokers coordinate contracts between the buyer and seller. Anyone considered a professional and played a vital role in the function of the bank is a banker. Here’s how you can become one:

Training & Skills

To become a banker, you do not necessarily need a post-secondary degree. The requirement for a bank teller is simply a high school diploma or its equivalent. While a bachelor’s degree in business, finances, economics or some other related discipline is not necessarily required for all banker positions, it definitely makes your resume stand out from the rest.

Furthermore, a person without a bachelor’s or an MBA will have little to no chance of securing employment at a banker job that offers competitive salaries. For almost all banker positions, employers search for candidates who have excellent communication and math skills, since these are two critical elements of the work environment: people and numbers.

So the first step to become a banker is to either seek out a degree or land a job in an entry level position, such as a bank teller, and work your way up.

Job Duties

Your job duties will depend on your banker position. For example, if you are a bank teller, you will be responsible for handling customer’s personal and business accounts, cashing checks, counting money, issuing savings bonds, answering customer’s questions pertaining to their accounts, etc.

If you are an investment banker, your main duty will be to connect businesses to investors who will provide the financing that the company needs through stock and bonds.

If you are a personal banker, you will work for a financial institution and examine clients’ assets, offer advice and solutions, and consult with clients about their financial needs. It is a good idea to research the different banker opportunities out there and find the one that best suits your needs.

Job Outlook & Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the job outlook for bankers, or financial advisors, is 9% for the years of 2010-2020, and this is slightly lower than the projected increase for the average job growth.

Most bankers will work full time and long hours, and the ones who land the most lucrative careers are the ones who have at least a bachelor’s degree and 5 years of experience in a related field. Salaries can range anywhere from $32,000 as a personal banker to $150,000 and up as an investment banker analyst.

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